Peterman: The Bills' quarterback competition is a business

The second-year Bills quarterback joined Howard and Jeremy on Wednesday from training camp

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August 15, 2018 - 1:17 pm

Photo: Rich Barnes - USA TODAY Sports

The Buffalo Bills wrapped up training camp at St. John Fisher College on Wednesday with the quarterback competition between A.J. McCarron, Nathan Peterman and Josh Allen still in a state of flux.

Each quarterback has gotten their chance to work with each offensive unit during the practices, and each has gotten various degrees of work with each unit. On Wednesday, it was McCarron working with the first-team unit while Josh Allen took reps with the second-team offense once again. Peterman was with the third-team unit at practice, although he has been rotating with McCarron on the first-team offense for the past few practices.

Peterman was the quarterback who got the nod for the first game of the preseason last Thursday against the Carolina Panthers. The second-year quarterback out of Pittsburgh went 9-of-10 for 119 yards, a touchdown and an interception in his preseason debut, and looked poised and confident in his time under center through the first quarter.

"I thought it was a good start," Peterman said with Howard Simon and Jeremy White at training camp on Wednesday. "Obviously there's a few things I thought I could have done better, but it was a good start. It was the first preseason game, [we have] a long ways to go, but just trying to build off of everything."

The 24-year-old signal caller has been busy this offseason and preseason trying to learn a new offense under new offensive coordinator, Brian Daboll.

Daboll came over from the University of Alabama after winning a College Football National Championship this past season under head coach Nick Saban. In the past, Daboll has worked with the New England Patriots, and has been part of several Super Bowl winning teams under the leadership of head coach Bill Belichick.

In the first game, fans and media alike got the chance to see Daboll's offense in action, and it was immediate that the offense was going to have a look that the team has not seen in years. However, Peterman says there is still more from Daboll that we have yet to see in his offensive scheme.

"I haven't been with him for a full year, so I haven't quite seen his full offense where you get in the game plan during the year, and there's plays that he has run maybe three years ago that he wants to run again," Peterman said. "There's always that wide array of plays that you can have, but I know the intensity always keeps going up every preseason game."

Since Daboll's hiring in January, Peterman has worked with Daboll closely in order to comprehend his system, and for Daboll to get a good look at one of his quarterback options heading into the 2018 season. One thing that he has learned in his time going through the playbook is that Daboll's system will certainly keep everyone on their toes.

"Coach Daboll does a great job of always moving things around and creating different looks where it doesn't ever look vanilla or stagnant. We're at least familiar with [the offense] right now," Peterman said.

"For me it's very logical in a sense that the way he calls things makes a lot of sense to me. Every coordinator you have you try to get in their head a little bit, and I think when the quarterback and the coordinator are on the same page and know what each other is thinking, that's really when you have success. I think I've been able to do that. Coach Daboll has done a great job of communicating very well with us with how it should be read, different examples of it from the past, and then just getting out there and having a feel for things. It's been helpful to do that, and I think I've found a big familiarity and conformability with it."

As for the quarterback competition, Peterman is no stranger to this situation in Buffalo. Not only was Peterman in competition for the starting job when he was with Pittsburgh, he was involved in another competition before he transferred out of the University of Tennessee. With that experience, he knows that he can't worry about the smaller details if he wants to come away as the starter out of practice.

"I've been in a competition in college, a few actually, and I've always learned from there - and any other competition you're doing - if you're worrying about [where you're practicing], you're worrying about the wrong thing. That's just wasting your time and your mental energy when you have a defense in front of you and you have to go out and perform," Peterman said. "I try to keep a focus on the actual game and not the game within the game, I guess."

As for his chances of winning the starting job, Peterman knows that his play will have to dictate the decisions of the coaching staff when the time for a decision is looming.

"At the end of the day, it's about going and moving the ball down the field. It's a business," Peterman said, "Whoever can do that and help us win football games - that's ultimately it is win football games. I'm sure that's going to be the main evaluation."

You can listen to Peterman's entire interview with Howard and Jeremy below:

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